by Mitch Kokai
Senior Political Analyst, John Locke Foundation
After a tumultuous year for media professionals, 11 percent more Americans consider journalists to have “low” or “very low” honesty or ethical standards in 2016 than in 2015, according to a new Gallup poll.
The drop comes after President-elect Donald Trump made the media a target of his presidential campaign over the past year. Trump regularly called out the media for dishonesty and bias at his campaign rallies, in the presidential debates, and elsewhere.
College teachers have sunk even lower in the eyes of the public, with 18 percent rating teachers’ honesty low in 2016, compared to only 10 percent in 2012.
Thirty percent more Democrats than Republicans gave college teachers a “high” or “very high” ethics rating.
While Americans’ distrust for many professions is growing according to Gallup, the view of healthcare professionals has been consistently better.
Nurses held onto a 15-year streak of the highest ethics rating from the American public. 84 percent rated their standards “high” or “very high” in 2016.
Despite backlash by groups such as Black Lives Matter and other protesters over police killings during the past year, police officers won a higher rating for integrity this year than last: 58 percent of Americans rated police officers highly in 2016, 2 percent more than in 2015.